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CSS Entertainment strengthens executive ranks

Feel-good content prodco and distributor Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment has bolstered its senior management ranks with the appointment of three leading industry executives. The hirings will accelerate CSS Entertainment’s ...
March 22, 2019

Feel-good content prodco and distributor Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment has bolstered its senior management ranks with the appointment of three leading industry executives.

The hirings will accelerate CSS Entertainment’s growth across three key businesses, including video-on-demand networks, distribution and production.

The Cos Cob, Connecticut-headquartered media company has named Philippe Guelton (pictured, left) as EVP and president of VOD networks; David Fannon (right) as EVP of distribution of CSS Entertainment and president of Screen Media; and George Lansbury as EVP of content strategy and president of originals.

As president of VOD networks, Guelton will oversee all of CSS Entertainment’s properties that monetize video content directly to audiences. His role will further enable the organization to consolidate all of its VOD operations, including Pivotshare, Popcornflix and Truli, while also laying the groundwork for future acquisitions.

Most recently, Guelton served as CEO at digital media company SheKnows Media, which was acquired in 2018 by Penske Media Corporation and rebranded to She Media.

Prior to this, he was president of Thrillist Media Group, part of GroupNine, COO at print and digital media company Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S., and CEO of Japanese publishing company Fujingaho (now part of Hearst).

In addition to his role as president of Screen Media, Fannon assumes leadership of all of CSS Entertainment’s distribution and content acquisition initiatives as EVP of distribution.

He first joined Screen Media in 2005 and has overseen the growth and expansion of the distribution division over a 14-year period, including overseeing the company’s 2017 acquisition by CSS Entertainment.

Prior to Screen Media, Fannon oversaw all business affairs for A&E Networks’ growing slate of original productions.

Lansbury, meanwhile, will assume responsibility for multi-platform programming and production of the firm’s portfolio of original television series and short-form videos.

Most recently, Lansbury served as SVP of programming, production and operations at Fusion Media Group, serving as a key player in launching FusionTV. Prior to this, he worked on original projects with YouTube, AMC Networks, Cablevision and MTV Networks.

“We have created our own ecosystem to produce and distribute content both on a business-to-business basis, as well as directly to audiences,” said CSS Entertainment chairman and CEO William J. Rouhana, Jr. in a statement. “This structure creates logical homes for our content brands like A Plus, Popcornflix, and Truli, as well as future companies. Just as importantly, this structure will help us lower our costs to acquire customers and will allow us to operate more efficiently.”

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